RAC comments on new package of measures to improve air quality in Wales
A package of new measures have been announced to improve air quality in Wales. Among these are a £20m Clean Air Fund and the introduction of 50mph speed limits over short stretches of road at five locations, two of which are sections of the M4.
RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: “In principle we are supportive of Clean Air Zones where they target the most polluting vehicles which do the most miles in the most polluted areas.
“Air quality clearly needs to be improved, but it’s questionable whether reducing the speed limit to 50mph on two stretches of the M4 in Wales which are regularly subject to major jams is likely to make a difference to harmful nitrogen dioxide levels. Slowing down traffic can help to improve flow, but if there are simply too many vehicles for the road space, then jams are still likely to occur so this is as much a question of capacity as anything else. The issue affecting these two areas, which are both close to urban areas, must be solved in the long term not just temporarily, if indeed the speed limit reduction has the desired effect.
“A website indicating air quality in local areas is extremely positive news, but consideration should be given to extending these to electronic roadside signs so motorists are made aware of air quality issues where they actually occur. Increasing awareness among motorists of this problem will help to change behaviour.
“The RAC is supportive of anti-idling measures which encourage drivers to switch off their engines or engage stop-start technology as this is a relatively simple solution to immediate improve air quality. We would encourage Welsh authorities to adopt such measures.”
Notes to Editors
The press office email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note: the press office is unable to help with individual customer enquiries - please visit the RAC contacts page to find the right contact.
ISDN radio studio facilities are available for interviews Monday to Friday.
About the RAC
The RAC provides complete peace of mind to 12m UK private and business drivers, whatever their motoring needs. Its services include:
- Breakdown assistance. Its highly-skilled, 1,600-strong branded patrol workforce attends more than two million breakdowns every year, fixing on average four out of five vehicles at the roadside. The RAC’s patrol fleet is one of the most advanced in the UK, and was the first to roll out both an All-Wheels-Up recovery system, allowing the vast majority of vehicles to be recovered from a single patrol van, and EV Boost mobile electric vehicle charging units
- Insurance. The RAC is a top-five car insurance broker having surpassed the 500,000 policies-in-force milestone in 2018. It also offers ‘black box’ telematics policies, as well as home and travel insurance
- Other motoring services. The RAC leads in the development of new solutions for business, fleets, electric vehicles and future car technology. Its additional products and services include a personal loans offering, a used car buying website, vehicle inspections and checks, legal services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information. It also has a network of Approved Dealers and Approved Garages which combine the trust of RAC brand with local service and convenience
The RAC also works to support the interests of its members and UK drivers on the most important motoring issues which it identifies via the annual RAC Report on Motoring and the RAC Opinion Panel. The Report on Motoring is the longest running analysis of driver opinion in the UK having been published every year since 1989.
For more information about the RAC, visit the RAC website.